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Dr. Lynette Gillis has accepted the position of Interim Dean of the College of Business, following the appointment of former Dean Dr. Don Christian to CEO at Concordia. The College of Business has been working on an interim succession plan for more than three years and Dr. Gillis has been well-prepared for this role, including the support of her colleagues.
Dr. Gillis began at CTX in 2008, and is currently a full-time business Assistant Professor of Management. The areas she specializes in include international business, leadership and strategic management. She has also been serving as the director of the undergraduate Bachelors of Business Administration (BBA) program where she was responsible for developing the course schedule, hiring of all part-time instructors, student advising, curriculum assessment planning and data reporting. Dr. Gillis has worked closely with Dr. Donald Christian to ensure that the program quality, growth and improvements provide a robust and relevant curriculum in the College of Business.
In addition, Dr. Gillis created the business scholar program, where she is actively involved with the Ethics in Business and Community Awards for the greater Austin area, as well as oversees the Business Thrivent Scholars Program. In addition to her role as full-time professor, Dr. Gillis has served as the chair of general education committee and previously as the chair of the faculty welfare committee.
As Interim Dean, Dr. Gillis will oversee the College of Business operations and academic processes and provide leadership and oversight to its graduate and undergraduate programs for all locations, including the main campus, remote centers and on-line. Dr. Gillis will also take over the Speaker Series and oversee the College of Business budgets.
"Dr. Gillis has all the qualities needed to be successful in this interim role – she understands the needs of faculty and students, has the respect of the broader CTX faculty, and is well known and respected throughout the greater Austin region," Dr. Donald Christian said. "I’m excited to work with her in this interim role and I know that she will continue to build the College of Business at Concordia."
Dr. Gillis earned her Ph.D. in Management from the University of Texas at Austin in 2008. She currently lives in Austin, Texas with her husband and four children.
RecognizeGood and EiBC presented a $10,000 scholarship to the Business Scholars Program at Concordia University on Thursday Feb. 27, during the Ethics in Business & Community Alumni Gathering held on campus. The scholarship will aid with travel, local business tours, challenge courses and leadership training. Last year, the scholarship was used for an integrated computer decision-making leadership simulation, as well as a Georgetown Challenge Course that focused on teamwork, leadership and values.
The event also recognized past EiBC award recipients and announced the 2014 EiBC finalists.
EiBC award nominees are evaluated by Concordia University undergraduate students participating in the College of Business’ Business Scholars Program. Students review and research the nominees, narrow the list to 12 finalists—three in each category (individual, nonprofit, and small or large business)—and create an in-depth review of each finalist. The finalists’ reviews are then presented to an independent selection committee comprised of business and community leaders who vote on the award recipients. The selection committee is led by Donald Christian, Ph. D., dean of Concordia University’s College of Business.
“Being a part of this process helped me understand not only what I learned in the classroom, but also how to represent the University in a variety of networking opportunities and meetings,” Amanda Hurvitz, Concordia University student, said. “After doing the research, I decided that I really want to be a part of companies like the ones we chose as finalists, because I learned how important it is for organizations to have high ethical standards and values.”
CTX Business Scholars students standing with professor Lynette Gillis and Dean Don Christian at the Ethics in Business lunch.
Pictured (Left to Right): Nehemiah Zapata, Dr. Lynette Gillis, Adam Whitlock, Dean Don Christian, Benjamin Schmale, Amanda Hurvitz, Katelin Faithfull, Tim Black
Other Business Scholars Not Pictured: Sairam Pathi, John Watson, Aaron Dunahoe, Colin Allison
During a time when Master of Business Administration (MBA) programs in the Austin area are seeing declining enrollment, Concordia University continues to see an increase in the number of students seeking to further their education and careers. Since its inception in 2010, the MBA program at Concordia has grown by 255%.
MBA students take their learning and professional experience and consult with local companies, including nonprofit organizations. Students will work on creating strategic marketing plans, business plans, social media campaigns, research and other related project management initiatives for their prospective clients.
MBA program director Elise Brazier attributes the growth to the type of program the University has developed.
"Our program appeals to people looking to make a difference in their community," said Brazier. "They like that we're doing something different. Our mission to develop Christian leaders is evident in this program."
MBA student, and graduate of the first cohort, Kevin Overton-Hadnot stated that “my future plans are to capitalize on the theme Concordia has instilled within me: Developing Christian Leaders.” Concordia University’s MBA program has helped shape many students plans as well as help them develop their own passions and a common understanding of the specific strategic steps for launching an organization.
Students in the MBA program were divided into cohorts, or learning teams as part of their educational experience. Each cohort ranged from government agencies to technological agencies to non-profit organizations.
“The learning teams sort of remind me of Proverbs 27:17, As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” Individual students in each team brought many different background and educational experiences to the table; therefore, “each learning team served as accountability partners along the way” Overton-Hadnot said.
For more information on the Concordia MBA, please visit Concordia.edu/mba.
Today’s world is in need of a new type of leader. For those who will take the lead in solving the problems of society, it is
paramount that they receive training that is relevant to who they are and the type of environment in which they will do business. Leadership training is often done in a vacuum, where one hears about what leaders should do and how leaders should act. But it is seldom done in a real-world setting with real-life experiences.
The College of Business at Concordia University Texas and Thrivent Financial for Lutherans believe that leadership training can and should be different. By partnering together, real world experiences can be learned alongside classroom theory. By having students learn from top-notch business people and then letting them practice learned skills in a complex and fast-paced culture, an environment can be provided where leaders are built to face the challenges of the future. This is what the Thrivent Scholar’s Program at Concordia University Texas can provide.
Thrivent Financial for Lutherans, a Fortune 500 financial services firm, has teamed up with Concordia’s College of Business to offer the first Thrivent Scholar’s Program. This program takes eight students and helps them learn on-the-job-skills while also preparing them for leadership in today’s society. This year’s group will study the topic of Leadership, hearing from distinguished speakers and reading a variety of material on the subject. Participants will also be considered for internships with Thrivent and be eligible to attend leadership conferences.
Congratulations to the 2014 Thrivent Scholars:
Pictured (Left to Right): Adam Whitlock, Amanda Hurvitz, John Watson, Tim Black, Colin Allison, Nehemiah Zapata, Katelin Faithfull, Benjamin Schmale
Not Pictured: Aaron Dunahoe, Sairam Pathi
This first time event was created as an opportunity for MBA graduates to network with current and prospective MBA students. David Sikora, CEO of Digby, was the guest speaker at the event. He spoke on "Lessons Learned thru Entrepreneurship."
Pictured: David Sikora and James Candido